10 questions on the CAA for BJP Working President JP Nadda
The ruling party's working president clearly knows a lot more about the CAA than others, for the simple reason that the government consulted neither the opposition nor the states before amending the Citizenship Act. But faced with a backlash from the people and opposition-ruled states on the CAA and with the Supreme Court expected to hear arguments against the amendment, BJP has been forced to bend over backwards to claim that the amendment is innocuous and that people are being misled by the opposition, especially the Congress.
Nadda was speaking at an event held in support of the Citizenship Amendment Act when he threw this 'challenge'. "The Congress is opposing the CAA. I dare Rahul Gandhi to speak 10 sentences on the law. He should tell us in two sentences what is his problem with the CAA," he was quoted as saying.
Later he took to Twitter to carry on his attack. "For the Congress and the Left, their vote bank comes before the country. For Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the country comes first and votes later," he posted on the microblogging platform.
Nadda is expected to formally succeed Amit Shah as BJP president on January 21 when the party holds 'elections' for the position. The moot point is whether Nadda himself can answer the following ten questions on the CAA. He can surely answer them in 10 sentences.
1. The Modi Government, by its own admission, has granted Indian citizenship to 2830 erstwhile Pakistanis even before CAA, 2019. So, why does the Government need the amendment?
2. Does Mr Nadda know that in the sixties and the seventies, India granted citizenship to 4.61 lakh Tamils and two lakh people from Burma (Myanmar)?
3. Is he aware that the GOI already has access to Census, 2011 figures, updated NPR data of 2015, the BPL list, list of bank account holders and details of over 1.25 billion Indians by way of Aadhaar?
4. Is he aware that it was the Home Minister Amit Shah who linked the 'chronology' of the CAA first, to be followed by NRIC?
5. Why has the government left out Tamil Hindus from Sri Lanka, Hindu Rohingyas from Myanmar or Christians from Bhutan and Nepal from the CAA?
6. How are illegal immigrants from Pakistan and Bangladesh expected to prove that they were subjected to religious persecution? Especially since CAA requires them to have been living in India for at least five years?
7. Why has the CAA put the cut-off date for all such illegal immigrants as December 31, 2014? Does it mean that religious persecution in Pakistan and Bangladesh has stopped after December, 2014?
8. Since the Prime Minister has claimed that CAA, NPR and NRIC are not linked, while the Home Minister has said quite the opposite, does the BJP or government plan to give a categorical assurance that no NRIC will be compiled and NPR will not require people to prove the date and place of birth of their parents ?
9. Since the Prime Minister has claimed that NRIC has not even been discussed in the government, how did the President of India make a reference to it in his address to Parliament? Is the BJP going to demand appropriate action against the Cabinet Secretary for misleading the Union Cabinet, the PM and the President?
10. Does he seriously believe that Hindus from Pakistan or Bangladesh cannot be spies or terrorists when we have plenty of evidence that some Hindus even in India have been helping terrorists and spying for foreign countries?